There’s no question that Amanda Freed Katchka is one of the most successful fastpitch softball players of all time, having won championships at every level—how many athletes can say they have won it all at the high school, club, college, Olympic and pro levels?
In her youth days, Amanda led her Pacifica (Garden Grove, California) High team to a CIF Section championship (the farthest you can go) and also won a club national title with Gordon’s Panthers.
A three-time All-American at UCLA, she pitched the Bruins to a NCAA National Championship in 1999 and runner-up finishes in 2000 and 2001.
A member of the USA Softball program from 1999 to 2007, in 2004, Amanda was part of the USA Olympic Team that won Gold in the Athens Games and she was took Gold medals in the 2002 ISF World Championships in Saskatoon, Canada; the 2003 Pan American Games in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and the 2006 ISF World Championships in Beijing, China.
Her professional career involved playing in the NPF for the Texas/Rockford Thunder from 2005-2007 and in 2008 she won an NPF National Championship with the Chicago Bandits. Amanda even played professionally in Japan later that year with Denso to give her international pro experience.
Today, she works as a private softball instructor and group clinician both locally and nationally and is a Color Analyst for the Pac 12 Networks and ESPN Networks during the NCAA collegiate softball season and amateur championships throughout the summer.
In her first of a two-part interview Amanda did with Brentt Eads of Extra Inning Softball in the backyard of her Huntington Beach, California home, she talks about:
- what’s she doing now including instructing young players
- what she sees as the No. 1 misconception pitchers make
- the main difference she sees between calling college and club games
- the key mental differences she sees between the college and club levels